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May 20, 2010 | 12:00 a.m. CST
Commissioning cupcakes decorated to look like vaginas is awkward. But for BODYTALK art director and MU alumna Sarah Handelman, it’s part of the job.
BODYTALK, a free quarterly e-zine accessible online in PDF format, was created in October 2009 by MU senior Joseph Beeman. Beeman publishes all submissions, which often address taboo topics such as menstruation, piercings, anal sex and gender transition. The e-zine’s latest issue, dubbed “The Queer Issue,” features first-person essays and articles about topics including coming out and same-sex marriage.
“Exploring such a broad topic is a blessing and a curse,” Handelman says. “It allows many voices to be heard and allows us to explore every facet of the topic, but it also leaves a lot of room for cliché or inaccurate interpretation.”
Beeman has had submissions from readers in India and the U.K, and for the third issue, “The Women Issue,” Jen Vaughn, who has been featured in Bitch magazine, drew comics.
“It’s like a community, which I didn’t really anticipate happening before,” Beeman says.